Club hurling returns this weekend

Theres a busy schedule of fixtures listed for the week ahead and after three Sunday mornings of football it is the turn of the hurlers to take centre stage with a number of interesting games down for decision.

The pick of these could come in Carey on Sunday where Carey Faughs make a long awaited return to Division 1 following many years in the second grade and their meeting with Loughgiel Shamrocks should attract a good crowd to Ballyvoy.

The primary aim of Cathaoir an Rin this season is likely to be Division 1 survival and they will be hoping to catch the visitors cold at this early stage of the season but it will be a tough task against as young Shamrocks side.

Carey Faughs on the evening they received last season’s Division 2 League trophy On Sunday they take a big step up when they face Loughgiel in Division 1, the first time they have competed in the top division in over 30 years.

In Division 2 its Shane O’Neill’s Glenarm who make the step up from division 3 for the first time since 2008, after recording a L eague and Junior championship double which saw them go all the way to an Ulster final where they unforunately lost to Satanta of Donegal.

Sarsfields are the visitors to Feystown and the local side will be keen to get some early points on the board and with the Stewartstown Road side usually slow starters to the season the Glenarm men might just get off to a winning start.

The Glenarm team who clinched the Division 3 Hurling title last season. They will be back in the Division 2 for the first time since 2008.

ACFL Div 3

Fri 24 Mar 2023 8 15 PM

St Malachy’s — v — Naomh Úna CLG/St Agnes’ GAC Falls Park Colm McDonald 

O’Neills Sportswear ACHL Div 1

Sun 26 Mar 2023 12 00 PM

Ballycran — v — Cuchullains Dun Lathaí Ballycran Darren McKeown 

U17 HL Div 1

Sun 26 Mar 2023

12 00 PM Na Gaeil Óga — v — Ard Na Rí Lamh Dhearg Aidan Kelly 

u17 HL Div 2

Sun 26 Mar 2023 12 00 PM

CLG MacDaibhéid — v — O`Donovan Rossa Davitt Park James Reid 

Sun 26 Mar 2023 12 00 PM

Tír na nÓg Randalstown — v — All Saints Ballymena Tir Na nOg Randalstown Seamus Shannon 

Sun 26 Mar 2023 12 00 PM

Naomh Éanna — v — Naomh Eoin Páirc Éanna Hugh Torney 

Sun 26 Mar 2023 12 00 PM

Glenariffe/Glenravel — v — Naomh Padraig – North Antrim Glenariffe Fergus Mc Alister 

ACFL Div 3

Sun 26 Mar 2023 12 00 PM

Éire Óg — v — CLG Uí Dhonaill Eire Og CLG Martin Quinn 

O’Neills Sportswear

ACHL Div 1

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

Cathaoir an Rí — v — Na Seamróga St Patricks Park Kevin Parke 

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

Ballygalget GAC — v — Naomh Éanna Ballygalget Patrick Tumelty 

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

Ruairí Óg — v — Mac Uílín CLG Ruairí Óg Ciaran Mc Closkey 

ACHL Div 2

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

Glenariffe Oisin CLG — v — Kickhams GAC Creggan Glenariff Ossians Mark O Neill 

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

Robert Emmets Cushendun — v — Tír na nÓg Randalstown Robert Emmets Cushendun Terry Reilly 

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

Bredagh — v — Naomh Gall Naomh Gall Niall Clifford 

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

Shane Uí Néill — v — Pádraig Sáirseil CLG Pairc Ui fhearsithe Lorenzo Mc Mullan 

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

Carryduff — v — Ghaeil Chluanaidh Carryduff Denis Mc Kay 

ACHL Div 1 Res

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

St.Patrick’s GAC, Portaferry — v — O`Donovan Rossa Portaferry Francis Caldwell 

ACHL Div 3

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

Con Magee’s Glenravel — v — Na Magha Páirc an Athar Mhic Fhinn Shane Mc Donnell 

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

Naomh Brid Cloiche An Mhuillinn — v — Cuchulainn Hurling Club St Bridgid’s Cloughmills Declan Mc Garry 

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

Glen Rovers — v — Lamh Dhearg Glen Rovers GAC Ryan O Reilly 

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

Gort na Móna CLG — v — All Saints Ballymena Páirc Mhic Ionnrachtaigh Barry Milligan 

ACHL Div 4

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

Belfast Saints HC — v — Anraí Seoighe St Agnes GAC John O Connor 

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

Naomh Bríd — v — Ciceam Ard Eoin Musgrave Park Eamon Hamill 

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

MacDaibhéid — v — Loch Mór Dál gCais GAC Davitt Park Chris Brown 

ACFL Div 3

Sun 26 Mar 2023 2 00 PM

Na Piarsaigh — v — Wolfe Tones GAC Patrick Pearses Richard Leahy 

O’Neills Sportswear ACHL Div 1

Sun 26 Mar 2023 3 45 PM

St.Patrick’s GAC, Portaferry — v — O`Donovan Rossa Portaferry Fionntan Mc Cotter 

ACHL Div 1 Res

Sun 26 Mar 2023 3 45 PM Ballycran — v — Cuchullains Dun Lathaí Ballycran

Sun 26 Mar 2023 3 45 PM

Ruairí Óg — v — Mac Uílín CLG Ruairí Óg Paul Mc Sparran 

ACHL Div 2 Res

Sun 26 Mar 2023 3 45 PM

Naomh Gall — v — Robert Emmets Cushendun Naomh Gall Colin Thompson 

Sun 26 Mar 2023 5 00 PM

Ruairí Óg — v — Pádraig Sáirseil CLG Ruairí Óg Darren Mullan 

ACFL Div 2

Wed 29 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

Naomh Séamas — v — Naomh Pól CLG /St Pauls GAC St James’ (Fionntan Mc Cotter) 

Wed 29 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

CLG MacDaibhéid — v — Naomh Treasa CLG /St Teresa’s GAC Davitt Park Niall Clifford 

ACHL Div 3

Wed 29 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

Lamh Dhearg — v — Gort na Móna CLG Lamh Dhearg Mark Mc Donald 

Wed 29 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

St Mary’s Rasharkin — v — Glen Rovers St Mary’s Rasharkin Paul O Neill 

Wed 29 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

Na Magha — v — Naomh Brid Cloiche An Mhuillinn Na Magha Lorenzo Mc Mullan 

Wed 29 Mar 2023 7 30 PM

All Saints Ballymena — v — Con Magee’s Glenravel Ballymena Eamon Hamill 

U15 FL Div 1

Thu 30 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

Roger Casements Portglenone — v — Naomh Eargnait, Muine Glás Kelly Park John Hasson 

Thu 30 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

Naomh Bríd — v — Naomh Gall Musgrave Park Colin Thompson 

Thu 30 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

Gort na Móna CLG — v — Naomh Pól CLG /St Pauls GAC Páirc Mhic Ionnrachtaigh

u15 FL Div 2

Thu 30 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

Lamh Dhearg — v — Ciceam Ard Eoin Lamh Dhearg

Thu 30 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

Naomh Treasa CLG /St Teresa’s GAC — v — Pádraig Sáirseil CLG Pairc MhicDhomhnaill/ÚiDhoctairtigh

Thu 30 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

CLG MacDaibhéid — v — Naomh Eoin Davitt Park

Thu 30 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

St. Mary’s Aghagallon — v — Naomh Seosamh/St Joseph’s Pairc Na nGael

U15 FL Div 3

Thu 30 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

Naomh Séamas — v — Tír na nÓg Randalstown St James’

Thu 30 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

St Mary’s Rasharkin — v — Cuchullains Dun Lathaí St Mary’s Rasharkin

Thu 30 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

Clann na hÉireann Carraigin — v — All Saints Ballymena Erin’s Own Cargin

Thu 30 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

Con Magee Gaels — v — Kickhams GAC Creggan Glenravel

U15 FL Div 4

Thu 30 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

Naomh Pól CLG /St Pauls GAC — v — O`Donovan Rossa Pairc Naomh Pól Brian Mac An tSionnaigh 

Thu 30 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

Naomh Éanna — v — Bye 1 Páirc Éanna

Thu 30 Mar 2023 6 30 PM

Naomh Padraig — v — Naomh Comhghall CLG Kirkwoods Park

Thu 30 Mar 2023 6 30 PM C

Cardinal O’ Donnell’s GAC — v — Naomh Bríd Pairc MacRuari

Ulster University lose out to Carlow in Freshers final

Freshers Hurling Division 2 All Ireland Final

SETU Carlow 2-14 Ulster University 1-14

Ulster University lost out to SETU Carlow in Thursday’s Division 2 Freshers Hurling final at Abbotstown, the Jordanstown side losing out by a goal in the end.

The killer blow for UU came in the opening minute when Carlow got in for a goal through Wexford man John Kelly. UU fought back to level the game with points from Padraig McKillop, Deaghlan Mallon and goalkeeper Pearse Smyth (from a 65) by the seventh minute, but Carlow edged ahead on ten minute with a point from centre forward Oisin Pepper.

McKillop levelled the scores again with a point from play but they were dealt another bad blow when Kelly got in for Carlow’s second on 20 minutes. McKillop and Eoin Pucci picked off points for the Ulster side, and though Kelly got another point for Carlow, UU hit the front on 27 minutes when Fionn Turpin found the net, and the wen on to lead by 1-7 to 2-3 at the interval.

It was score for score during the third quarter and Padraig McKillop (2) and Pearse Smyth picked off points for UU but three in a row from Carlow gave them the edge. McKillop closed the gap again but the Carlow college hit three more without reply to take a foothold in the game. Two more from McKillop frees kept Jordanstown in touch but late scores from Keelly and substite Conall Byrne sealed the win for Carlow.


Jack Foristel, Ros Dempsey, Ruairi Delaney, Alan Dumphy, Calum Corcoran, Michael Dundon, Eric English, Josh O’Brien, Ryan Quinlan, Eoin Doyle, Oisin Pepper, Aaron Byrne, Alan Mahoney, Oliver Murphy, John Kelly


Pearse Smyth, Ryan Callaghan, Eoin Boylan, James Higgins, Daire McMullan, Kevin Curran, Eoin McBrearty, Ben McAuley, Padraig McKillop, Deaglan Mallon, Odhran Gillen, Eoin Pucci, Tadh Donnelly, Dermot Rogan.

Trip to Longford not a dead rubber-McEntee

Longford v Antrim

Allianz NFL Division 3

Glennon Bros Pearse Park Sunday 2.00pm

Antrim’s spectacular win over league toppers, Cavan at Corrigan Park last Saturday earned them a place in division 3 for the 2024 season and removed he pressure of travelling to Pearse Park in Longford needing a win to preserve their division 3 status

However when I spoke to manager, Andy McEntee after the Cavan game he told me that he didn’t regard Sunday’s visit to Longford as a dead rubber but rather as an opportunity to build momentum as they prepare for their Ulster championship opener against Armagh in a couple of weeks-time.

Antrim were forced to make a number of changes for the Cavan game because of injuries to key players with Jack Dowling and Patrick McCormick coming into the starting line-up and Paddy McBride returning after a lengthy layoff because of a finger injury and McEntee hinted that these players deserve another chance, given the Cavan result.

Declan Lynch was another who returned to the Antrim side and had an excellent game at full-back while Peter Healey and Seamus McGarry saw some late action and Pat Shivers, Ryan Murray and Conor Stewart will be amongst those hoping to get some game time in Longford.

The sides last met on March 12th 2022 when Antrim were still pushing for a promotion place and Antrim recorded a good win that day at Corrigan Park but in the end missed out on promotion.

Five years earlier the sides met at the same venue with division 3 survival the prize and on that occasion with Longford emerging as winners by a single point.

Today we look back at those two games and the reports that appeared in the Saffron Gael as we look forward to the trip to Pearse Park and hopefully another win to build on the Cavan result.

Longford are already relegated but put up a mighty fight against Down in Newry last time out and will be playing for pride and Antrim should not take them lightly but I feel the Saffrons can build on last week’s win and finish their campaign on a high

Antrim v Longford

April 2017

Antrim and Longford met in the National League back in April 2017 with division 3 survival very much the prize for both sides.

Both teams were sitting on four points with Laois and Offaly who met on the same weekend in Tullamore but Antrim had an inferior scoring difference so only a win would do for the Saffrons if they were to avoid the drop.

The Frank Fitzsimmons-Gearoid Adams managed side went into the game on the back of an encouraging display against Armagh the previous Saturday evening. They were well organised and showed impressive reserves of spirit and commitment, but two red cards late on meant they would be without midfielder Stephen Beatty and experienced forward Conor Murray for the Longford game.

Ryan Murray was also out injured but Niall Delargy and Sean McVeigh were expected to start after coming on against the Orchard men while rookies Sean Pat Donnelly, Conor Donnelly and Seamus McGarry were also pushing for places.

The game came too soon for county captain James Lavery but his Cargin club mates Kevin O’Boyle and Tomas McCann had returned to the fold and were expected to make a contribution in the crucial encounter.

Longford headed north on the back of a three-point loss to a Laois side Antrim defeated in the preceding round of fixtures. Gearoid Adams said at the time “there’ll be a change of tactics from the defensive set-up against Armagh. I think we need to go for it,” he said.

For the record CJ McGourty scored 0-5 and Mickey Pollock added 0-3 but significantly CJ was off target from a late free that would have earned Antrim a draw.

Allianz National Football League Division Three 

Antrim 1-19-0-12 Longford 

Kevin Herron reports from Corrigan Park 

March 12th 2022

Antrim ensured Division Three survival but more importantly- boosted their hopes of a top-two finish and promotion to the second tier with a 1-19-0-12 win over Longford at Corrigan Park this afternoon. 

An early Tomas McCann goal from a penalty had the hosts in the driving seat early-on with Conor Murray chipping in with four of his sides nine first half scores, though at the other end, a vital save from Oisin Kerr afforded the Saffrons plenty of breathing space at the interval. 

Although Longford did improve after the break, they couldn’t find a way past Kerr with Peter Healy making a goal-line clearance in the visitors most promising moment in the second period and Antrim saw the game out to make it three wins from five and ensure they will be up amongst the contenders for promotion at the league’s conclusion in two-week’s time. 

Enda McGinley was forced into pre-game alterations to his starting fifteen as Dermot McAleese and Martin Johnston were promoted from the bench in place of Kevin Small and Jamie Gribbon. 

The hosts made the ideal start on the Whiterock and within the first 30-seconds had a glorious opening when Tomas McCann fed Odhran Eastwood for an early goal opportunity, though his attack was halted abruptly by Patrick Collum in the Longford goal and referee Niall Cullen signalled for a penalty. 

Tomas McCann took responsibility and confidently rifled high past Collum- who guessed the right way- and Antrim were off the mark. 

McCann notched up his first point of the afternoon a few minutes later after taking the ball from Ryan Murray and swinging a shot between the posts. 

Further scores arrived: Conor Murray claimed an advanced mark and converted from a routine position, Martin Johnston then had his run halted, and Ryan Murray swung over the resulting free and Ruairi McCann claimed a mark out wide and steered it between the posts to give his side a 1-04-0-00 lead. 

Longford kicked the opening point of the second period through first half substitute Oran Kenny, but Ryan Murray kicked his first point from play and Tomas McCann took an off the shoulder pass from Marc Jordan and shifted it high over the bar. 

Jack Duggan got his angles right and landed his first score of the afternoon and a few minutes later his side carved out another goal opportunity. 

Like the chance in the first half, it came after a pointed effort came off the large upright, this time an effort from Darren Gallagher, the loose ball fell to Daniel Reynolds- who only entered the fray 60-seconds before and despite Oisin Kerr narrowing the angle, Reynolds got a shot towards goal, which was cleared on the line by captain Peter Healy. 

Odhran Eastwood and Jayson Matthews traded scores from frees and Eastwood would double his account after a neat interchange with Michael McCann as Antrim were 1-15-0-06 to the good with a quarter of an hour remaining. 

Matthews would follow-up with his second point from a free and then substitute Mark Hughes popped over a second score in succession for the visitors. 

Enda McGinley began to run his bench and the introduction of Pat Shivers yielded two further scores. The Cargin forward carried on from his eight league points at Hannahstown last weekend with a score 60-seconds after his introduction. 

Cian Dooner produced a fantastic score in response, though the Saffrons hit three on the bounce- Conor Murray adding to his four first half points with another two from play with Shivers squeezing over his second in-between times. 

The visitors replied with three points of their own, Dooner conjuring up his second in quick succession with Oran Kenny and Jayson Matthews converting the last two from frees. 

Both sides would end the encounter a man light after Dermot McAleese was shown a black-card in injury-time and then Eoghan McCormack was given his marching orders for a second yellow-card offence. 

It mattered little in the grand scheme of things as Antrim were convincing 1-19-0-12 winners at the conclusion and keep alive their hopes of promotion going into the final two games of the campaign away to Louth and home to Westmeath. 

Antrim: O Kerr, E McCabe, R Johnston, P Healy, P McAleer, J Laverty, M Jordan (0-01), M McCann, D McAleese, R Murray (0-03, 0-02f), M Johnston, C Murray (0-06, 0-02m, 0-01f), T McCann (1-03, 1-00p), R McCann (0-02, 0-01m, 0-01f), O Eastwood (0-02, 0-01f). Subs:

J McCann for P McAleer (HT), B McCormick for M McCann (57), P Shivers (0-02) for M Johnston (60), P McCormick for R Murray (64), E Hynds for T McCann (69). 

Longford: P Collum, P Fox, A Farrell, B O’Farrell, J Moran, PJ Masterson, I O’Sullivan, R Moffett, D Gallagher (0-03f), J Hagan, J Duggan (0-01), D Farrell, E McCormack, J Matthews (0-03f), A McGuire. Subs: O Kenny (0-02, 0-01f) for D Farrell (32), D Reynolds for A McGuire (45), K Diffley for R Moffett (47), M Hughes (0-01) for J Hagan (51), C Dooner (0-02) for Duggan (57). 

Referee: Niall Cullen (Fermanagh) 

Joe (Liam) McCartan RIP

Joe (Liam) McCartan, for decades a community leader in West Belfast through his dedicated work at CLG Naomh Pól on the Shaw’s Road.

The 77-year-old died at his home in Coolnasilla Park East on Sunday after a long battle with illness.  He is pre-deceased by his wife Maura and son Liam, and survived by his children Fiona, Grannia and Conor and his adored grandchildren Cara, Cormac and Cillian.

Joe is also pre-deceased by his mother Rita, father Jack, brother Thomas and survived his sisters Kathleen and Philomena (Australia) and brothers Jim (Australia), John and Eamonn.

Joe was educated in St Kevin’s Primary School and then St Thomas’s Secondary School on the Whiterock Road. Following shorter stints of employment, he spent the majority of his professional life working as a Sales Manager for the Prudential and played a key role in providing opportunities and employment for many local people within this industry.

Liam and his wife Maura

However, his great passion was for the GAA and particularly CLG Naomh Pól, Béal Feirste.  He started playing for CLG Naomh Pól in the late 1950’s and in later years he excelled in the administration of the club.  In his roles as Secretary and Chairman Liam was the driving force behind many of the club’s key milestones including the relocation to Shaw’s Road, the development of the pitch, the construction of the club rooms, handball alleys and changing rooms.

Liam had the vision to see how CLG Naomh Pól could develop and possessed the qualities to deliver this for future generations by establishing a structure that drive the club from junior to senior status. 

He was instrumental in creating a love and loyalty for the GAA culture and community in thousands of young people in West Belfast.

Liam was never happier than when he was either at Shaw’s Road or at his caravan in Enniscrone, Co. Sligo with his late wife Maura and his family.

In a family statement, Liam’s children commented on their love for their father and described him as “their hero”.

The hundreds of comments on the CLG Naomh Pól social media platforms provide a snapshot of the positive impact Liam has had on so many people within the local community.

Liam’s funeral will take place in St Agnes’s Church today Thursday 23rd March 2023 at 1.30pm with burial taking place at Hannahstown Cemetery.

Liam who was the man behind building the handball alleys at St Paul’s

Goals give Loreto the edge against St Pat’s

Allianz Corn Gobnait Junior A final

St Patrick’s Maghera 0-9 Loreto Kilkenny 4-10

St Pat’s Magera’s bid for All Ireland Junior A glory was undone by a very good Loreto side at Darvar on Wednesday as the Kilkenny college collected yet another title at this grade, their 14th since 2007.

St Pat’s fought tooth and nail throughout, and had a great spell during the second half, but it was Loreto’s ability to take their scores, and their goals in particular, that divided the sides in the end.

Playing with the aid of a strong diagonal wind Maghera started well when Cáit Conway sent over a point from a free, and the Co Derry school could have had a few more but for some wayward shooting.

Loreto got on the scoreboard in the fifth minute when left half forward Aofie Shealy got in for a goal, but Magera hit back with two more points to level the game. The second goal was a real body blow for the St Pat’s girls, as Sarah Kehoe’s shot for a point just dipped below the crossbar and into the net, the goals proving the difference as they girls in black and amber went on to lead by 2-5 to 0-5 at half time.

Most pundits were expecting Loreto to run away with the game when they had the use of the wind in the second half, but the St Pat’s girls had other ideas and they played their best Camogie of the game in a hard fought second half. Good defensive work by the Maghera side denied full forward and team captain Ciara Dunne in the early stages and when they moved the ball down field Cáit Conway pulled a point back from a free.

With wing half backs Branagh Brolly and Ellie Griffin running at Loreto at every opportunity, ably assisted by Lucy McKaigue, Rhianna Doherty and McEldowney they began to create chances and closed the gap with some well take points. However the goal they needed to really get them back into the game never really looked like coming and Loreto bided their time.

Entering the last ten minutes the Kilkenny girls began to find their range and goals from Eleanor Doheny and team captain Ciara Dunne put the game beyond St Pat’s grasp.

The Player of the Match award went to Loreto centre back Anna Doheny who gave a masterful display to keep the Ulster champions at bay, but St Pat’s, who had four Antrim girls in the ranks,  can take great heart from their second half display.


Loreto: C Dunne 1-6, A Shealy and E Doheny 1-1 each, S Kehoe 1-0, L Boyd 0-2 frees

St Patrick’s: C Conway 0-6 frees, MT McCullagh, R Doherty and O McCartney 0-1 each.


E Brennan, S Doheny, A Carroll, C Hickey, E Murphy, A Doheny, G Brennan, O Kennedy, L Gilmore, S Kehoe, A Kirby, A Shealy, E Doheny, C Dunne capt, L Boyd.

Subs: A Laherty for E Murphy (35), M Kenny for L Boyd (58), A Murphy for O Kennedy (59)

St Patrick’s:

Ó Henry, L McKaigue, E Murray, A McFaul, B Brolly, K McCloskey, E Griffin, C Conway capt, MT McCullagh, R Doherty, O McCartney, C Hampsey,A.Hampsey, C Chambers, A Mulholland.

Subs: M Horgan for A Mulholland and C Mallon for C Hampsey (both 47)

Referee: C Dooley (Offaly)